This Scandinavian-inspired SUV concept celebrates everything that Volvo and Polestar stand for

The boxy nature of the Volvo XC concept seems like a hat-tip to the Swedish company’s humble design beginnings, although that modern, minimalist appearance feels a lot like the Polestar ethos was also brought to the table. The result, however, is an SUV that looks fantastic. The clean design doesn’t look boring, and there are enough subtle details to guide the eye and keep people transfixed. Truly a masterclass in Scandinavian automotive design, and a lesson that all automotive brands should consider taking.

Designer: Chris Lah

I’m resisting the temptation to bring the Cybertruck up as a comparison only because it seems overdone at this point in time, but then again, it seems to be the only apt comparison apart from Canoo’s own cars. The XC’s design boasts of a similar cleanness but doesn’t distort the car’s silhouette to the extent the Cybertruck does. It’s minimal without being abstract, is what I’m trying to say. The Volvo XC comes with simple 3D surfaces, punctuated by parting lines galore that add their own distinct flavor to the car. The headlights are almost a hat-tip to Polestar’s automobiles – although that isn’t really much of a surprise considering Volvo is Polestar’s parent brand. The taillights, on the other hand, feel unmistakably Polestar.

The Volvo XC concept gets its name from the XC90, which it shares its wheelbase with. However, unlike the XC90 which hugs the tarmac, the latter hs much higher ground clearance, rivaling the 2021 Ford Bronco. The inspiration for the XC’s aesthetic has strong roots in Scandinavian minimalism – a distinct design ethos that’s arguably one of Sweden’s biggest contributions to the world of design. In that pursuit of minimalism, the XC does take quite a few cues from its sibling, the Polestar Precept. Especially the nude metallic finish, the embracing of dynamic parting lines, and even the car’s rims, which are a hat-tip to the Swedish flag’s design.

The XC, however, isn’t made for the urban setup the way the Precept is. Its larger-than-life persona and high ground clearance indicate the fact that it can easily dominate any sort of terrain. The SUV clearly runs on an electric powertrain, given the absence of a grille on the front or exhaust at the back. It also sports a massive boot-space, perfect for carrying your outdoor gear with you, and boasts of panoramic windows as well as a tinted roof that immerses you in whatever space you’re driving through, be it city roads or even mountainous terrain.